- Posted January 8, 2012 by
Mina, Mecca, Saudi Arabia
Muzdalifah and Mina
On the night of the ninth of Dhul-Hijjah (November 5th, 2011), our group left Arafat and headed to Muzdalifah, also known as al-Mash'ar al-Haram. Muzdalifah is mentioned in the Holy Quran: “..So, when you hasten on from Arafat, then remember Allah near the al-Mash’ar al-Haram...” (Surah al-Baqarah, Verse 198). It is here that pilgrims spend a few hours of the night beneath the open sky, remembering God and reciting prayers, as seen in the first photo. As Shaykh Mazaheri puts it, "That which the soul had achieved in Arafat must be seized and controlled. It is here that the World of the Unseen (Alam al-Ghaib) becomes the World of the Witnessed (Alam al-Shuhud)" ("Secrets of the Hajj", 31).
In Muzdalifah, we also picked small stones (2nd photo) from the mountain that were to be used in Jamarat the next day for the stoning of walls representing Shaytan (Satan).
The third photo is that of the men of our Hajj group preparing for prayers.
Upon leaving Muzdalifah, we traveled next to Mina (photos 4-7). After praying for forgiveness in Arafat, and reflecting and remembering God in Muzdalifah, pilgrims strive to reach a closer connection with God. Mina represents the point in the journey where pilgrims, having attained this closeness to God, supplicate and ask for the granting of their prayers, hopes, and aspirations.
After spending a few hours in Mina, we then journeyed on foot to Jamarat (7th photo).